vinum software raid as boot drive

David Kelly dkelly at
Tue Sep 21 06:24:51 PDT 2004

On Sep 20, 2004, at 8:52 PM, Greg 'groggy' Lehey wrote:

>> We could not find stated exactly anywhere, but we are presuming the
>> description file that you use with vinum create becomes
>> /etc/vinum.conf
> Well, you need to call it that.  The name isn't critical, but it's a
> good choice.

I use vinum only for a data volume. I've seen /etc/vinum.conf mentioned 
in the handbook and other documentation but didn't understand its use. 
Was under the impression that recent vinum stored this information in 
the headers on the drives? That it found its drives by reading the 
volume types off BSD partitions.

Vinum in 5.2.1 often fails to remember its configuration on boot. But 
sometimes remembers on a cold boot. Would "vinum printconfig > 
/etc/vinum.conf" help?

>> When we execute vinum create it appears to work fine.  The Devices are
>> created in /dev/vinum/ and we can do a fsck -n -t ufs /dev/vinum/root
>> which outputs no errors
>> The problem is when we reboot the devices in /dev/vinum are destroyed 
>> (
>> presume this is normal behaviour ) but they are not created on boot.
> Take a look at  It
> might help; otherwise supply the information asked for there.

This is a problem I too have been having since 5.2.1, which was the 
first time I used vinum. Was only out of desperation, "Its broken, 
everything is lost, did something wrong, lets start over" that I re-ran 
"vinum stripe -v /dev/ad4s1d /dev/ad6s1d" and then on a lark rather 
than newfs I ran fsck and found my /dev/vinum/vinum0 intact!

Sometimes vinum finds its configuration and boots. Then something 
changed and vinum behaved on 3 boots in a row. Had composed a lengthy 
email in answer to Greg's debugging checklist above. Was tricked into 
deleting it unsent. I think Beastie's last name might be Murphy.

Upgraded to 5.3-BETA and developed a new problem: vinum causes a kernel 
panic when started from the rc scripts.

I suspect the issues are related because I always lose vinum 
configuration after a panic, but usually do not if I let the mount fail 
during boot (for lack of "vinum_start=YES" in /etc/rc.conf) and drop me 
into single user. Then "vinum start" and "exit" typed manually usually 
brings the system up. Drops me into single user again if vinum lost its 

David Kelly N4HHE, dkelly at
Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad.

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